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5 March 2002
Oil-for-Food Background Information


Weekly Update

(23 February - 1 March 2002)

Iraqi oil exports under the United Nations oil-for-food programme gained considerably in volume last week, averaging almost 2.5 million barrels per day, following month-long sluggish levels. With 12 loadings in all - five loadings from Mina al-Bakr terminal, totalling 8.6 million barrels of oil, and seven loadings from Ceyhan, totalling 8.8 million barrels, the week’s exports reached 17.4 million barrels, netting an estimated €370 million (euros) or $320 million in revenue, at current prices and rate of exchange. The average price of Iraqi crude oil was approximately €21.15 or $18.35 per barrel.

So far in phase XI of the programme, which ends on 29 May, 141.8 million barrels of oil have been lifted, out of the 319 million barrels approved by the United Nations oil overseers under 131 oil purchase contracts. Estimated revenue generated in phase XI is €2.7 billion or $2.4 billion.

Since the beginning of the programme on 10 December 1996, estimated revenue raised from the export of some 2.94 billion barrels of oil has amounted to approximately $38.6 billion and €15.4 billion ($13.4 billion). With the adoption of Security Council resolution 1330 (2000) on 5 December 2000, 72 per cent of the oil proceeds fund the humanitarian programme in Iraq, 59 per cent of which is for the 15 central and southern governorates and 13 per cent for the three northern governorates.

Concurrently, humanitarian supply contracts worth some $32.2 billion have been both approved by the Security Council’s 661 sanctions committee and “fast-tracked” by the Office of the Iraq Programme (OIP), including $2.9 billion worth of contracts for oil industry spare parts and equipment. So far, $19.6 billion worth of humanitarian supplies and equipment have been delivered to Iraq, including $1.2 billion worth of oil industry equipment, while another $10.9 billion worth of humanitarian supplies and $1.7 billion worth of oil industry equipment are in the production and delivery pipeline.

The total value of contracts placed on hold by the 661 Committee remained almost unchanged at $5.32 billion. During the week, the Committee released from hold 25 contracts, worth $28 million, and placed on hold 32 new contracts, worth $54 million. Of the total “holds” covering 2,106 contracts for the purchase of various humanitarian supplies and equipment, 1,448 contracts, worth over $4.6 billion, were for humanitarian supplies and 658 contracts, worth $710 million, were for oil industry spare parts and equipment.

There were 252 contracts, worth $519 million, in the category of “inactive holds”, for which the suppliers had not provided the additional technical information requested by the “holding” Committee member(s) in over 60 days. However, in the category of “active holds”, there were also 643 contracts, worth more about $1.88 billion, for which although the suppliers had provided the requested information over 60 days ago, the “holding” Committee member(s) had not yet made a final decision.

As at 1 March 2002, almost $2 billion and €189 million in unused funds were available in the United Nations Iraq Account for the issuance of additional letters of credit for the purchase of humanitarian supplies and oil spare parts and equipment by the Government of Iraq.

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Produced for media and public information – not an official United Nations Document
For further information please contact Hasmik Egian, OIP - NY, 1.212.963.4341